Section 11: Langtry to Del Rio

 

Day 129

11 miles

 

Whispering Palms Inn is our home while the parents are here. It's quite the scene. We meet a new person every morning and the owner, Bob is already our best friend. There were a couple chairs arranged outside our door that set the stage for constant conversation with the neighbors. John and his friend were visiting relatives in Del Rio and told us about their family that lived further down right on the river (and invited us to stay with them). Steven was three doors down and in the middle of a cross country bike adventure. He shared a story about wandering deliriously into Mexico one night after an exhausting day on the road. Border Patrol had to remind him that he was in the wrong country. So many stories to hear! It made for a slow morning.

 

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Kim and Fred are leaving today. Will we survive without them?

No. We are devastated. We all lounged around for several hours recounting the absurd stories of the last couple weeks (and the impossible logistics).

 

Thank you Kim and Fred for delivering us safely to the end of this section! These two are so competent that it’s easy to forget how smoothly and efficiently a trip is running when they're participating. Their skills have evolved over 50 years of their own adventuring but they are unaware of this impressive scope because they still imagine themselves to be the harebrained schemers of their memories. The only thing leftover from that era is the 50 year-old gear! Thank you Fred for going straight to work every morning fine tuning the systems for the boats with your knowledge of knots and mechanical workings. And thank you for being our quiet driving force and applying the creative logic of an engineering mind to every situation. Thank you Kim for your curiosity for life that seeks out and remembers such an interesting breadth of knowledge about the world. You orchestrate every moment perfectly for the benefit of others. You're our power packed ball of energy providing direction to our group while maintaining kindness and care for every single one of us. We love you both!!

 

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We tearfully waved goodbye to Fred and Kim and reluctantly got ready to hike. Thank God we still have Sarah for a couple of days! Her energy and encouragement provided a much-needed balm to our flagging spirits. She wrangled us into shape and dropped us off at yesterday’s spot. Back to work!

 

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It was just us and the semi trucks. Each one that passed at 70 mph roughly shoved us and our backpacks to the side with a giant gust of wind. Sometimes we had it in us to wave, sometimes we silently screamed, wanting to let out the stress that we felt sharing the road with such intimidating monsters. It wasn't their fault but we were grumpy.

 

 
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Border Patrol stopped us. Hello, it’s been awhile! This guy said they had been keeping an eye on us for the last couple days. Okay, nice to see you too. He was curious about our trip, which has been an interesting difference about Texas BP.

Remember back in California or Arizona when they inquired if we were okay, then zipped off the second we answered?

This guy wanted to know what we were doing out here and most importantly, where in the world we slept. Ha! We happily reported, we have support right now and will be picked up at the end of our day. Thank goodness. We’re lucky and grateful!

 

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